Chemical added to soda, laxatives, cocoas, vinegars & salts promotes obesity

SaltAndVinegar.gifDioctyl sodium sulfosuccinate, or DOSS, is a chemical used to mix the the ingredients in soda. DOSS is also used in laxatives like Colace and Docusate, in some breakfast cocoas, in vinegars and in salts. A research study conducted earlier this year found that DOSS appears to act as an obesogen, a chemical that promotes weight gain. Read the full article here.

Probiotic Stuffed Peppers

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Optimizing health begins with the gut so eating probiotic foods regularly is key. Tempeh is one such probiotic food derived from fermented soybeans. It originates from Indonesia but can be substituted for tofu and meats in many dishes. Here I took a traditional stuffed pepper recipe and swapped beef for tempeh and white rice for brown. Healthy recipe makeovers are simple!
Makes 6 servings
2 12 oz packs of tempeh, chopped into 1/2 inch cubes
1 cup cooked brown rice*
1/2 T grass-fed butter or coconut oil
2-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, chopped
6 green bell peppers
25 oz tomato sauce
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce (optional)
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup fresh italian herbs (basil, partly, oregano) or 1 T dry Italian seasoning
olive oil, 1/2 T per half pepper
*Much rice these days is contaminated with arsenic. Certain brands such as Lundberg have been found to be the purest. To minimize risk, rinse rice prior to cooking and cook rice via “pasta method”. This means to cook the rice in a lot of water and drain once cooked.
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. In a skillet over medium heat, cook the onions and garlic in butter until translucent. Add the tempeh and cook for 5 minutes or until lightly browned.
  3. Remove and discard the tops, seeds, and membranes of the bell peppers. Arrange peppers in a baking dish with the hollowed sides facing upward.
  4. In a bowl, mix the tempeh, garlic and onion mixture, cooked rice, 1/2 of the tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and pepper. Spoon an equal amount of the mixture into each hollowed pepper. Mix the remaining tomato sauce and herbs or Italian seasoning in a bowl, and pour over the stuffed peppers.
  5. Bake 1 hour in the preheated oven until the peppers are tender.
  6. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil before serving for oleic acid!

As-Healthy-As-It-Gets Peanut Butter Ice Cream

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I modified a classic ice cream recipe into this healthier, not-so-sickeningly sweet one. The amount of sweetener (xylitol) used can be adjusted to taste but I recommend keeping the sweetness to a minimum (1/3 to 1/2 cup). That is the key to making ice cream less addictive! No need to use low fat cream and half-and-half. By getting grass-fed, organic dairy you will be making a snack higher in healthy omega 3 and CLA fats (anti-inflammatory, brain-boosting, and obesity and cancer fighting fats). You’re going to need an ice cream maker for this one. I use a KitchenAid mixer and ice cream maker attachment.

2 1/2 cups grass-fed, organic half-and-half

8 pasture-raised egg yolks

1/3 to 1/2 cup of xylitol

2 1/2 cups grass-fed, organic whipping cream

4 teaspoons natural vanilla

1/8 teaspoons sea salt

1/2 cup natural peanut butter (aflatoxin free such as Santa Cruz Organic)

In medium saucepan over medium heat, heat half-and-half until very hot but not boiling, stirring often. Remove from heat; set aside.

Place egg yolks and xylitol in mixer bowl. Attach bowl and wire whip to mixer. Turn to speed 2 (medium speed) and about 30 seconds, or until well blended and slightly thickened. Continuing on Speed 2, very gradually add half-and-half; mix until blended. Return half-and-half mixture to medium saucepan; cook over medium heat until small bubbles form around edge and mixture is steamy, stirring constantly. Do not boil. Transfer half-and half mixture into large bowl; stir in whipping cream, vanilla, and salt. Cover and chill throughly, at least 8 hours.

Assemble and engage freeze bowl, dasher, and drive assembly. Turn to STIR (Speed 1). Using a container with a spout, pour mixture into freeze bowl. Continue on STIR for 20 minutes. Transfer to airtight container and store in freezer. Ice cream may be a bit soft but it will harden in the freezer.

Yield: 16 1/2 cup servings (That’s right, 1/2 cup servings! Consume in moderation!)

Drew’s Basil Pesto (Dairy-Free)

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This is my husband’s brilliant recipe. There is no need for cheese but 2 tbsp of parmesan can be added if preferred.  Simply blend all ingredients in a blender or food processor:

2 cups fresh basil

2 cloves garlic (garlic lovers, add more!)

1/4 cup walnuts

3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

juice of 1/2 lemon

salt to taste

Ideas for using pesto:

Smear on grilled fish before or after cooking.

Smear on a thin slice of whole grain bread and top with chopped tomatoes and a pinch of salt and pepper.

For a simple, balanced meal: Toss with just a little cooked brown rice pasta, lots of steamed or sautéed veggies (such as zucchini, eggplant, yellow squash, bell pepper, tomato) and a moderate amount of beans (drained & rinsed) or canned salmon (drained).

Gluten-free, Dairy-free Nut-butter Cookies

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This is a delicious cookie that makes a healthy snack. Just don’t eat too many! Although the sweetener used, xylitol, is calorie free and benefits you by killing candida (yeast), like any sweetener, it can leave you craving more sweets!

Mix:

1 cup almond, cashew or peanut butter (or a mix)

1/4 cup coconut flour, almond flour, ground flax, or rice bran (or a mix)

1 egg (optional)

2-3 tbsp xylitol (Xylo Sweet)

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/4 tsp salt plus extra for sprinkling

coconut oil or parchment paper for pan

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix all ingredients until well combined. Roll dough into 6 balls and place about 1 inch apart onto a baking sheet greased with coconut oil or lined with parchment paper. Flatten cookies with a fork or palms of hands and sprinkle with a pinch of salt if desired.

Bake until golden around the edges, about 9-11 minutes, turn cookie sheet halfway through baking. Transfer to racks to cool. Enjoy in moderation!